This film prepares elementary school kids for the harsh lessons of junior high: You will no longer be the smartest or best athlete. Your carefree days of the teacher holding your hand are over. Your friends will leave you to befriend more interesting kids. You can be an individual by following the interests and clothing styles of the popular people. And finally, you are responsible for remembering your own gym locker combination.
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January 28, 2016 Subject:
Not My Jr High
My Jr high was a chaotic discipline barn, a fraction of the size of the one seen here. To top it off, they brought in a pack of incompetent weirdo commie-inspired teachers, and got rid of the good ones after the first summer vacation (the year after this film was made). We even had 16 year olds in our eighth grade. A pack of us did summer school just to get the eff out of there ASAP. Hated it. Biggest waste of 2 years (I headed off to an honors curriculum downtown rather than do 9th grade there).
September 23, 2010 Subject:
The film gave me panic attacks or PTSD.
January 16, 2008 Subject:
Wow. "face up to your limitaions", This is no doubt the A/V Geek's hand book. I loved seeing the Hall Moniter. Is this a primer on how to get beat up regularly in school?
Read the rule book.
In the immortal words of Homer Simpson, "Can't win, why try."
December 2, 2007 Subject:
Those were the biggest pompoms I've ever seen!
January 7, 2006 Subject:
I found this film incredibly packed with guilt inducers and items to put even more pressure on the little tykes after they break free from Elementary school. This film is essentially one big list on what you should do and not do. You should act more like your friends! (this bothered me somewhat, I mean, what if they smoke!). There will be more pressure for you to do well! If your friends shun you, you will have to find new friends! And on and on it goes. What I found also amusing about this is how nerdy ¾ of the population was in this film. Maybe thats who the film WAS made for, all the jocks of course, had different worries..
March 5, 2005 Subject:
Where's my handbook?
This is the first film I've viewed here that isn't hell bent on terrifying kids half to death, nor does it contain side-splitting hilarity.
The film actually takes a positive, logical view of the dreaded "transition" to Jr. high, and helps kids to get a sense of belonging, and basically let's kids know what's going on. I think it's great communication for kids, even by today's standards. I would recommend to any parents or teachers.
November 4, 2004 Subject:
You suck. Get used to it.
Man, this has got to be the realpolitik of junior high films. Blatantly realistic about the fact that you might not be the smartest, or most athletic, but that there are still things you can do, if you want to.
I wouldn't call this film oppressive: it tells you that "fitting in" is the easiest path to popularity (true), but also affirms that you can be true to yourself, and still find your own friends.
Sure, there are some laugh-worthy moments, but I'd rather have someone blatantly telling me an unkind truth than have some aetheric "this is the place where everyone is accepted" crap.